Dive into the Romantic Era with Blanca

26 juni 2020

Blanca started playing the piano with four and made her first recording with fourteen. Despite her young age, you immediately feel her decades of experience when she speaks about her instrument.

After finishing her Bachelor studies in Spain, she was looking for a different perspective on Classical Music and wanted to widen her horizon. Hearing from fellow students about the open atmosphere at the Royal Conservatoire and meeting Ellen Corver, who not only is an esteemed piano teacher, but also an accomplished pianist, convinced Blanca to continue her studies in The Hague. Blanca, being driven and curious also outside the concert hall, was determined to make the most of her time in the Netherlands and started with Dutch lessons in her first week. ‘I didn’t just learn Dutch to feel included, I really wanted to understand the Dutch culture and language is an important part of a country’s identity.’ Blanca is also interested in gender equality and therefore joined the Diversity Committee of the Royal Conservatoire last year. ‘I want to improve the student involvement and encourage a dialogue at school so we can all develop and grow together’.

Musically speaking, Blanca feels most at home in the Romantic Era. She really connects with the composers of that time. When she plays Chopin, she sinks into his world. ‘When I play, I am in the moment and everything around me disappears’. While watching Blanca play in her very focused and intense way, she pulls your right with her into the world of Chopin.

When Blanca read about the Art of Sound Department and the possibility of a professional recording, she didn’t hesitate and signed herself up with Chopin’s Ballade No. 1 in G minor. ‘I only had a short amount of time to prepare this piece but I really liked the challenge’, she tells us with a big smile.

Before starting recording, Blanca spoke to the AoS students. ‘We had a pleasant conversation about what music meant to us and we shared our favourite recordings with each other. Then, the AoS team explained some technical requirements and recording methods to me; e.g. that there is always one ‘best recording’ out of the several recordings they make, which will be the basis for the final, edited version of the recording. I learned a lot during this process and also started to listen differently to my own playing. It was a great experience!’

Blanca not only excels as a pianist; she also is an excellent researcher. For her research on the performance style of the Catalan composer, Frederic Mompou, who was a deep admirer of Chopin as well, she received a distinction by the Royal Conservatoire. She describes Mompou’s playing style as very free and flexible, just like pianists of the 19th Century. ‘Analysing his recordings and adopting some of his techniques helped me getting closer to the romantic way of playing. My research helped me to find my own lyrical rubato’.

More info on the 'Royal Conservatoire Recordings' label.

More info on the 'Diversity Committee'.